tv News of the Day Politics CSPAN September 22, 2012 10:10pm-11:00pm EDT
legislature, and the judiciary, and to judge the process of democrats is stationed in burma democratization in burma. have been divorced by democratic practices for many decades. in fact, many of them say they're frankly, we do not know what democracy is, but we do not want dictatorship. then they voted for us. we went around the country. i asked many of them why the wanted democracy. they usually it would say, we want to be able to lead our own
lives freely. we want the freedom to be able to decide our own destinies. simple wish.very has become very poor under the years of military and dictator leadership. it dates to be built on policies and to help raise as out of -- needs to be built on policies that will help raise us out of poverty. u.s. sanctions had no affeffect. lately in a the last years of military rule, the u.s. sanctions were blamed for all of that economic illnesses of burma and other ills as well.
there is great eagerness for the sanctions to be removed. on my part, i do not think we need to cling onto sanctions on necessarily. i want our people to be responsible for their own destiny and not to depend on too much on external props. we will need external help. we will need the help of our friends abroad and from all over the world. but in the end, we have to build a democracy for ourselves. we won a u.s.-burma -- want u.s.-burma relations to be where burma is accountable for their own destiny. in the fields of education and health and humanitarian aid, our
system is in a shamble. many of our people are barely educated. 15% of are the children did not go to school at all. of the rest, hardly 80% make it through high school. our educational system is in dire need of reform. we need practical help. our health system is in the same situation. we need a great help with health and education and the building up of democratic institutions. as i mentioned earlier, the weaknesses of these institutions is that of the judiciary. we have to work very hard at it. without the rule of law, you cannot have the kind of economic reform that would lift our people out of poverty.
economic relations between the u.s. and burma seemed to have come to the forefront over the last several months. the express great eagerness on the part of international businesses to invest in burma. recently, reproduced a draft of foreign investment law. -- we produced a draft of foreign investment law. the first draft was considered disappointing by many possible investors. some changes have been made to this. i believe it has been approved to be a lot more attractive than the last draft. whatever laws are produced, without the rule of law, without the kind of judicial system that will be there to make sure that the laws are upheld and obeid,
it will not provide anyone with the security of the freedom to operate effectively in our own country. while the united states seems to be concentrating a lot on the economic aspect of its relations with my country, i hope they will do in full awareness of the need to promote the rule of law. and to help the president and executive to carry out the reforms they have in mind, as well as to what the legislature to strengthen itself as a body that will protect the people's interest through the laws and the laws they simply have to get
rid of. there are many laws that do more harm than good, but not too many. several. activists have been placed in prisons over the last decade. many of you heard the release of prisoners in the burma was 500. that would mean over 200 political prisoners remain in prison. this is according to a list. there are other lists that are longer than this. the u.s. counts more than 400 people still in prison today.
by our count, over 200 remain. all of these would have to be freed if you talk about democrat patiization. there should be no prisoners of conscience. in a genuine democracy, people should be able to act in accordance with their conscience as long as they're not infringing on the rights of others. rule of law and human rights cannot be separated. it says in the preamble to the universal declaration of human rights that she meant rights should be protected by the rule of law. this is the principal. during the troubles that have arisen, we have always kept to this principle. there must be a respect for human rights. there must be rule of law. this is the way in which we can
defuse the tension that created the communal violence taking place -- which took place as recently as a few weeks ago. the government has formed a commission to look into this situation. they are a political party seen as the opposition party. we do not want to make political capital out of the situation in that state. we want to give it the government all the opportunities it needs to diffuse the situation and to bring about a peaceful settlement. we do not want to criticize the government for the sake of making political capital. we want to help the government in any way possible to bring
about peace and harmony. whatever help is asked of us, we are prepared to give if it is within our abilities to do so. position to a decide what we do and how we operate because we are not the government. this has to be understood by those who wish the nld to do more. what we can do is declare our principles to help in every way we can. human rights and the rule of law, these cannot be ignored if we are to resolve all of these communal problems. and that i think has to be accepted by all responsible parties. to ignore human rights or the rule of law or to insist on
human rights and pretend that the rule of law is a different matter, nor will it work the other way around. human rights is something we will think about later. these two have to go together. i'd like to talk about the issue of other ethnic nationalities. fighting has been going on for some time. i understand that intensified over the last two days. we need to build up ethnic harmony in our country. in the end, a harmony can only be brought about through mutual understanding and mutual respect.
we have to work at it. i believe that we need a time frame when we are talking of a political settlement. we cannot keep going on and on saying some day we will get there. we have to have benchmarks. we need to have milestones. we need to know when we want to get to where at what time. we have to work toward it. again, it is not what i am here to talk about principally. i am here to talk about u.s.- burma bilateral relations. i would like the united states to be aware of our problems. it is only by keeping an awareness of our problems that we shall be able to establish a strong, healthy relationship between our two countries. i want our countries to be
friends. you have been our friend through a long years. now it is time for you to be friends with our whole country, our people, and our aspirations. for you to help us to realize our aspirations, you have to understand what they are. you have to understand what our needs are. that is what real engagement is. trying to understand one another. we as well have to understand the united states. it is not a one-away business. it is a note two-way traffic. without understanding -- it is not a one-way business. it is a two-way traffic.
we have a lot to give you. we can give you the opportunity to engage with a people who are ready and willing to change this society. this will give you the opportunity to see how you can work together to change the society. there are many things in your society that you wish to change as well. i do not think there is a single country in the world that can be said to be perfect. by helping others, you will learn how to help yourselves. when you study the problems of our country, you will gain new insight into how you can deal with the problems relating to your own country. when you are starting the problems, you will gain greater insight into why there are
global problems that exist. so, i would like u.s.-burma relations to be a balanced one. a relationship that is based on mutual respect, understanding, and genuine friendship. we have a long way to go. i am hopeful back burma will get to the point where we can say, now we are in a society firmly rooted in the democratic values and democratic institutions. i am now a member of the legislature. naturally, i have to speak up for the legislature. it is a very new legislature, in more ways than one. i am quite impressed with that.
we are finding our way. we have been fortunate in that both the speakers of the assembly of the upper and lower house have treated us fairly. they have both gone out of their way to feel that there are not -- we are not discriminated against. we are giving consideration as an opposition party. we have established good relations with members of the nationality party. we are beginning to work together. we are beginning to learn the art of compromise, give-and- take. it is good that this is beginning in the legislature.
we hope this will become part of the political culture of burma. the political culture has been very weak in negotiated compromises. it is not the way we have worked for a good many years. if we are to resolve the problems that now face our country, we will have to learn the art of a negotiated compromise. we hope very much that the united states and other friends will help us in this learning process. in the end, u.s.-burma relations will be what we make of it, we here now. we will lay the foundation for a relationship between our two countries. what happens over the next few years will decide how strong and
healthy our relationship will be. i hope that all of you will take this as a comomon task to be carried out together with commitment and with confidence. we will succeedwew il in our endeavors. it will not be easy. might i bring my part of this proceedings into conclusion by saying that i would like to thank all of you for to have done for our country in the past. i look forward to the future when we shall be able to do much
more than three decades, the asia society has been recognizing extraordinary individuals who in their lives and professions have contributed to advancing mutual understanding between asians and americans in meaningful ways. the society of global vision award is bestowed upon leaders whose values and actions promote democracy, human rights, justice, and equal access to resources. aung san suu kyi and bodies these qualities like the other. she was the recipient of 2011 global vision award that was given to her last january. we are delighted to have the opportunity to present it to her today in person. aung san suu kyi is the chair of the national league for democracy. her biography is well known.
much of her accomplishments were made during her decade of detention. she was awarded the nobel peace prize for her lifelong struggle and support of democracy. she is an inspiration to the people in burma and to all the people in the world. it is a special honor for me to present this award to her. i am a longtime visitor to burma. i am a great fan of your country. i first went there in the 1970's. i kept going back. and there is a lot to love about burma. it is beautiful and a bountiful. i do not think anyone can find a more kinder and resilience people in the world. i was involved with a great man
who was a patriot and a man who would have been one of your great colleagues in nld. we spent many days and nights going over the struggles and triumphs of nld and the challenge of finding democracy. many of your party spent time in prison and also under deplorable conditions. i have got to say, in all of my visits to burma, none of them were like the one i had last year. i went there last winter. good news is hard to come by these days. it was astonishing to see so much good news burma coming news of all places. -- so much good news coming from burma of all places.
after 50 years of pretty much a brutal dictatorship, they are awakening at last. your picture was everywhere i went. it would hang in the bazaars at markets. a few years before, it was illegal to own the picture. i even picked out a handbag that had your picture. [laughter] longing for a change in burma is overwhelming. we know there will be obstacles along the way, but the democracy you have advocated for and have devoted yourself to on your life really seems inevitable. it is a thrill to watch history being made. it is a threat to have you with us today. it is my honor to call you to
the stage -- that is what it says here, but you are already on the stage. [laughter] it is great to have you here. this is an award in recognition of your decade-long struggle to promote democracy for human rights and justice. [applause] >> we were scheduled to end, but we will stretch it out for another 10 minutes. there will be some time for questions.
>> we're going to jump right into it. it is an honor to help moderate. we received a number of questions from twitter, facebook, and e-mail. we will launch right in. >> it is great to see you again. welcome to the united states after so many long decades. on this tour you will probably meet thousands, if not more, of your supporters and friends. we are looking forward to that. a little bit about obstacles. you spoke eloquently about the u. s-burma relationship and how far it has come in a short amount of time.
you made the point just now that without rule of law, the economy cannot be strengthened in a just way. now we know that the united states is considering listing and easing the ban on imports from burma. that easing would help people in your country in a meaningful way. do you support such a move now? if so, why? if not, what needs to be done to get there? >> i do support the easing of sanctions. i think our people must start taking responsibility for their own destiny. i do not think we need to depend on u.s. sanctions to keep up the momentum of our newfound democracy. we need to work with ourselves. there are many other ways in
which the united states can help us achieve a democratic ends. and build up the democratic institution that we are in much need of. sanctions are not the only way. we are very grateful for the fact that sanctions were instituted in the past. it helped us a great deal. i do not agree with those that say that sanctions kurt burma economically -- that sanctions are hurt burma economically. some people try to blame sanctions for the economic ills of their country. it did not really hurt us economically. if you read the reports of the imf, you'll find that the sanctions had very little economic impact on burma. >> i will ask a question that came from twitter. the question is -- there are a number of agreements and peace
negotiations on going in burma. what can the government do to build a trust with the ethnic groups and gain the confidence that the government is in fact responsive to their concerns? what role steeping civil society can play in that peace process in burma? >> there has been some distrust between the ethnic groups and the military government of burma for many years. you have to remember that most of the members of the civilian government and from the old military government. besides, the military still has a very powerful position. an example of the problem now is that some believe the seized
policy would not be upheld without the military. it is a question of lack of trust. no one trusts anyone else. that needs time to be built up. i think we need to learn more about conflict resolution from those who have gone through the same experience. even one as session -- even from one session, i learned a lot. we need to learn how to go about it. it is not something that comes naturally. >> we have received a number of questions.
and you have asked for clarification. when you addressed this issue, you said it was a situation related to -- the questions were -- what to do you mean by that? looking for a walk, what is the best way to address this issue? >> to begin with, i was talking about the rule of law. there are many aspects to the rule of law. it is a question of keeping peace in the area. the very first crime that was a commited a few months back, if that had been handled in accordance with rules are principles, such as actions the basicen quickly, justic
norms of rule of law were not observed. the whole thing escalated and became worse and worse. looking at it in the long term, we have to know who are citizens of burma are. we also examined the citizenship laws to find out if they are in line with international standards and the basic human rights requirement. it is not only citizenship law and will law. it is a rule of law. laws have to do with crimes -- it all started with a crime and the way the authorities handled with it. it was seen as inadequate. everything became worse. >> we have time for one more question.
this one came from an e-mail. what can members of the pro- democracy movement, as well as other activists, contribute to the burma democratic transition? >> each person has their own strength and weakness. each person has their own talent. i think they have to choose. some take part in humanitarian activities. some might be best going into politics. some might do best in other directions such as literature, art, etc. to benothino not think they hae
lumped together and only do one thing. i assume that each one of them is an individual with own talent and inclinations and ambitions. i do think they need to keep together as one organization all the time. they have to expand with the changing times. >> are the welcome or open to participate? >> are you talking about the ones who are living abroad? i do not believe that they will all fall into one category. second, will they be welcome in burma?
i think so. i think they will welcome any of the citizens who have been abroad for a long time if they wish to come back. >> thank you. on that note, we were thrilled to have the opportunity. thank you for joining us. i want to tell all of you that this entire discussion will be available on our website and society.org. thank you in. [applause] >> thank you. thank you to everyone who put this together. we will move aung san suu kyi out of the building.
we will leave right now. >> ladies and gentlemen, please remain in your seats until the official party departs. [applause] >> on "newsmakers" senator lieberman discusses the tax in libya. and the level of threats against the u.s. he also talks about what it is like to be an independent in the senate. "newsmakers" on sunday at 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. eastern on c- span. >> liz cheney and laurie romney, daughter in law of mitt romney,
campaigned in colorado. they took questions from the audience. it is about 40 minutes. >> laurie romney is married to matt, five sons one of five sont romney. she graduated with a bachelor of arts and organizational communication in 1964. she is a member of the chi omega sorority, university of iowa chapter. she studied abroad in a jerusalem program during the summer of 1992, which i that was fascinating. she served on a service mission
for her church in los angeles from 1994-1996. she married matt in december of 1996 in salt lake city. she worked in advertising in boston agencies before becoming a mother. she has four children. she has lived in boston and seattle since being married. currently they are living in san diego, california. she endures photography, reading, exercising, cooking in her free time. please help me welcome laurie romney. [applause] >> i action graduated from college in 1994 -- actually
graduated from college in 1994. [laughter] thank you for the introduction. it was a really nice. am laurie romney and i married to mitt romney's second son, matt. i am grateful that you are here. thank you for coming. this really is an important cause. that is why we are all here. the reason i am excited to be here -- i am not a professional speaker, so please excuse me if i am not as articulate as some -- but i feel that i have personal insight and stories to share about mitt that can help you develop a real feeling for how much he cares about women
and how confidence he is and how hard people work for you. that is what i want to share with your today. i know that unemployment rate has gone up in the colorado recently. i know that you have the same concerns regarding the economy and your family as the rest of the nation. i also share your concerns. my dad is worried about his veterinarian business that he started in colorado where he went to veterinarians school. my mom was laid off from her job at delta, but has luckily been rehired. the worry is a great weight on their shoulders and on mine worrying about them.
another worry for everyone -- i know it is a worry for everyone else as well. my kids are in the public-school system. we are facing budget cuts and all sorts of possibilities of not as good public education as they could be having. i worry about health care and consumer choice. i know you have these concerns as well. mitt's experience in politics and experience makes him the perfect candidate to help our economy grow, but you already know that. what i want to share with you is a little bit more about him. i have been able to get to know him over the past 16 years. i have been married for 16
years. he is really amazing. he and ann welcomed me with open arms into their family when i was first married. they have supported matt and i every step of the way of our marriage. i appreciate that. the first thing i thinnoticed tt was how dedicated he is to ann. he values her counsel and advice more than that of anyone else by far. the second thing i noticed over the years is his extreme frugality. [laughter] it's true.
and also his work ethic. he is probably the most frugal person i have ever met, baby besides my husband, who was raised by him -- -- maybe besides my husband, who was raised by him. [laughter] when we are together, he is always on alert on how the energy in the home is being used. i has been does this as well. if you are doing that dishes and then turn away to do something else, he will come and turn off the water. it is how they are. they cannot help it. is constantly watching the air conditioning. it is turned off unless it is
absolutely essential. another thing that is kind of funny that he does is that a lot of the times he consolidates the garbage because the waste management company in is area charges by the bag. [laughter] he made sure not to have many bags. watching his father eat an entire batch of homemade ice cream that was accidentally sweetened with salt so that it would not go to waste had a huge impact on mitt. waste is not tolerated. i think his sons could write a very funny book about it. he also worked harder than anyone i know. he has more energy and stamina than i do by far. he is appropriately named the
energizer bunny. i will never forget visiting him when he had just taken on the role of being head of the winter in olympics. he was barely eating or sleeping because he was taken on such a great weight. he was stressed out and worry about it. he was working himself to the bone. he was very concerned about turning it around and making it a success, which he did, but it took a lot out of him. he also loves manual labor. he is not afraid to get down and dirty. he works hard all of the time. any time he has an opportunity, he digs in and works hard. third and probably the most thing i have heard is
that mitt fixes things. he is gifted at finding a solution and taking action to fix the problem or improve a situation. i have never seen a more natural born leader. i am not saying that because i am his daughter in law. he was born to lead. he manifest this in every situation he is in, no matter how small. one example i would share with you is when i was expecting my twins, i started labor at 28 weeks. i was put on strict bed rest by my doctor. mitt and ann came to visit me night.r snifirst they were worried about what would happen.
he immediately took over the situation. first, he went downstairs and brought our tv up the stairs. he kept a storage unit and built a 8 tb stand and said it up in my room. he connected the cables and got everything working. -- and built a tv stand and set it up in my room. he connected the cables and got everything working. he called his best friend and asked if his daughter could come and help me with errands and things i have not yet finished. in a matter of minutes, he
greatly improved my situation and left me feeling relieved and hopeful. this is one small example. he did not even think of it. that is the way he operates. in every situation, i could tell you 1000 stories. it is the way that he thinks. he is very good at it. mitt truly cares deeply for women. you do not need to look any further than his family to see the love and respect and commitment that he has toward women. i have felt it deeply. my life has been blessed by him. my husband cares for me in the same way that mitt cares for ann. all of our lives can be blessed by him if he becomes the next president. i thank you again for your time
and appreciate all of your support. [applause] >> that was an incredible blend into who we all help elect to be the next president of the united states. -- incredible glimpse into we all want to help you like to be the next president of the united states. he loves his family. committed to his family. he is frugal. he is hands-on. he is a problem solver. he does not wait for someone else to solve the problem, but jobs in. isn't that who we need in the white house, ladies? [applause]
i am very excited to introduce our next speaker. liz cheney has been a woman who has been a role model for me. she is an incredibly accomplished woman in foreign relations. she is someone who has known and worked with mitt romney. i want to tell you a little bit about her. she was an attorney and specialist in you as-middle east policies. she is a founder and chairman of keep america safe, and non- profit organization dedicated to education and advocacy about american national security policy. as a fox news contributor, she provides analysis on you as national security policy on -- on u.s. national security policy in the 2012 election. she was the second ranking state department official responsible
for u.s. policy in the middle east. prior to that, she served as deputy assistant secretary of state from 2002-2004. i hope i got the states right. [laughter] is irresponsible for the establishment of the $300 million middle east partnership initiative to support educational reform and empowerment of women -- she is responsible for the establishment of the $300 million middle east partnership initiative to support educational reform and the empowerment of women. from 1999-2002, she served on assignment with the international corp., a member of the world bank group. she served previously at the department of state and at the agency for international agency for international development